Hamas rejects Abbas’ new moves

By Xinhua

Gaza : The Hamas movement Saturday strongly condemned Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ decision to turn the emergency government headed by Salam Fayyad into a caretaker administration.

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Ismail Radwan, a spokesman for Hamas, decried Abbas’ decision to turn the Salam Fayyad-led emergency government that legally cannot last for more than one month as a caretaker cabinet and insisted that the sacked Hamas coalition, headed by Ismail Haneya, was the legitimate one.

Abbas Friday extended the state of emergency he declared after Hamas militarily took over the Gaza Strip on June 14. He also expanded Fayyad’s government by appointing three new ministers.

Fayyad resigned as head of an emergency government Saturday, and was immediately appointed to lead an interim cabinet, which will remain in place until Fayyad forms a new administration.

“Considering the emergency government, which was appointed in violation of law, as a caretaker administration, is a new coup against the law and the legitimacy,” Radwan said in a statement sent to the press.

To settle differences with Hamas via dialogue, Abbas stipulated that Hamas returns things in Gaza to the pre-June 14 situation, and the security apparatus report to Fatah-dominated security services.

But Hamas turned down Abbas’ conditions, affirming they have launched the war “to uproot a chronic, dangerous cancer that threatened everyone,” referring to years of security anarchy and disorder.

Meanwhile, Fehmi al-Za’arrer, the spokesman for Fatah in the West Bank, said his movement supports President Abbas and “stands with him in every decision he takes to cure the aftermaths of the national disaster in Gaza”.

Fatah also said Abbas’ manoeuvre put the government on a new legal footing.